Why we exist
Private renting in the UK is broken. More people than ever have to rent their home from a private landlord, but the renting system is failing to meet their needs. Since 1989, when rent controls and security of tenure were abolished, rents have rocketed and conditions have plummeted. The two ‘escape routes’ from private renting – buying a home or renting one from a council or housing association – are no longer available to most people. The dysfunctional renting system causes homelessness, debt, poor health, poverty and insecurity but private landlords profit from it.
Renters often feel powerless, but this is changing. Renters are arming themselves with knowledge, speaking out about their experiences and calling for a fairer renting system. We teach renters about their rights, and we campaign for more of them. Because a privately rented room or flat is not a landlord’s cash cow; it’s a renter’s home.
What we want
We are a voice for the 2.7 million private renters in London. That means individuals, couples and families, of any age and from any background.
We’re a small organization but we think big. We think all privately rented homes should be decent, secure and affordable, and we think authorities should intervene when they’re not. We want every private renter in London to stand up for their rights, we want authorities and landlords to listen when they do.
We’re not the only people who think this way. We support others who are campaigning for a fairer private rented sector, whether they’re doing it at local, city-wide or national level, and we don’t try to duplicate work that’s already being done elsewhere.
How we work
We’re funded by The Nationwide Foundation to help people who rent their home from a private landlord to be heard by those who can change things for the better. We also work with London councils, finding ways to help improve their offer to people living in privately rented accommodation.
We’re managed by, and based in, the office of Camden Federation of Private Tenants, a local council-funded group for private renters in Camden.
Currently, we pay one co-ordinator, supported by volunteers. If you might like to volunteer with us, there’s a range of skills we need, from web writing to events management to fundraising. And we’re always open to ideas you might wish to develop. Do get in touch?
We’re not an advice agency and we don’t do individual casework. We’d like to, but we don’t have the resources for it. However, we can give information on housing rights and direct people to other agencies – and we can put renters in touch with each other.
We give renters in London the tools and knowledge they need to challenge unfair treatment from their landlords, and to campaign locally, in their boroughs or London-wide, for fairer renting.
telephone: 020 3826 4783
post: 13 Malden Road, London NW5 3HS